Having initially taken their League One title-winning form into the new season, topping the table after winning five of the opening six games, Brighton seem to have hit a wall.
Since going top they have picked up just three points from their next six Championship games and been knocked out of the Carling Cup by Liverpool.
By contrast, Birmingham have risen to eighth on the back of six consecutive wins in all competitions, including Wednesday’s 1-0 success against Leeds.
As such, Blues are 21/20 favourites in bwin’s 3Way football betting market for the clash between the sides at St Andrew’s, with the draw at 23/10 and a surprise Albion away win priced at 12/5.
A major reason for Brighton’s form is their inability to convert or even create chances. Monday’s loss to West Ham was the fifth game in a row where they’ve scored one goal or less and they’ve had the second fewest shots per game of any side in the division.
Punters looking for value should consider betting on exactly one goal, as has happened in nearly half of games featuring Brighton or Birmingham this season, at odds of 9/2.
Coupled with Birmingham’s strong defensive record, conceding an average of 1.3 goals per game, this makes a Blues win without conceding an attractive option for punters.
A Birmingham win to nil is priced 3/1, with a multi-score bet on a 1-0, 2-0 or 3-0 home victory available for 29/10 with bwin.
New customers using the £25 free bet available when signing up to a bwin account would win £97.50 if Blues were to win by any of those scorelines.
It’s not only Brighton that have struggled to score this season, though, as Chris Hughton’s side have scored one goal or fewer in 65% of their last 20 games.
Therefore, backing a game featuring under 1.5 goals at 11/4 is a good option and punters looking for more value should consider betting on exactly one goal, as has happened in nearly half of games featuring Brighton or Birmingham this season, at odds of 9/2.
In their recent winning run, Blues have tended to get a first-half goal then hang on for victory, so backing a Birmingham/Birmingham result in the half-time/full-time market at 13/5 is also a good way to go.
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